If there’s one tool that Property Managers and Owners need to have in their toolkit it’s an understanding of how to understand the credit and financial programs available today. For instance, if you don’t realize how badly your local Chase or Wells Fargo bank would like your business, you’re missing out on some free money, incentives and being treated like a V.I.P. You need to take the manager or the business accounts executive of your favorite local bank out to lunch and pick their brain as to what they can do to help you to help your customers.
They are usually very well connected and are a treasure trove of information about where the opportunities are and who you need to meet. Simply introduce yourself and tell them your goals. Then get your notepad ready, listen carefully and be prepared to learn about possibilities you didn’t even know existed. That’s how I learned about the latest iteration of the federal government’s HARP program. This is the Obama Administrations Home Owner Assistance Program designed to assist homeowner’s to refinance their mortgages. The whole idea is to help homeowners take advantage of low interest rates to reduce their monthly mortgage payments.
Borrowers who refinance mortgages through HARP may save between $2.5 billion and $5 billion in 2012 alone, this according to an analysis by The Wall Street Journal. Then there’s The Making Home Affordable Program (MHA) ® which is a critical part of the Obama Administration’s broad strategy to help homeowners avoid foreclosure, stabilize the country’s housing market, and improve the nation’s economy. Maybe you or someone you know has expenses that have increased due to medical bills or are picking up the pieces after a separation or divorce.
Perhaps you’re trying to get by with less because your hours were cut or your business faltered. In any case, it’s important to be proactive. MHA ® can offer solutions and guidance to get real help and real answers as quickly as possible. Business owners including those in the property management business need credit and financial assistance from time-to-time. The federal government has some useful programs in this arena as well. Most of these programs are available through the Small Business Association (SBA) and the General Services Administration (GSA). There’s also a very helpful website that walks you through all the government loan programs that are available to help small businesses find credit and financial assistance. Become familiar with it.
You’ll be amazed how many different kinds of loan programs there are to help small businesses including the Business & Industrial (B&I) Guaranteed Loan Program. The purpose of the Business & Industrial (B&I) Guaranteed Loan Program is to improve, develop, or finance business, industry, and employment and improve the economic and environmental climate in rural communities. This purpose is achieved by bolstering the existing private credit structure through the guarantee of quality loans which will provide lasting community benefits. Most of the banks that work closely with businesses in your community, including the one you own or work for, know how this and the many other kind of small business assistance programs work.
Stay in touch with these and other government-sponsored programs that may pertain to you and your clients. Once again you can be the go-to person on finding affordable financing and credit. One final word on this subject, and that’s to shop around for the best sources of information and business incentive programs. Not only should you talk to specialists at a branch of one of the big banks, but also talk to regional bank officers and those at the local credit unions. Some may know more then others and each has their particular niche that may pertain specifically to those in the rental housing industry. Ask lots of questions and while you’re at it ask for leads and references. You may be surprised what awaits you.